People logging into their Facebook account on a desktop computer over the last few days may have found the aesthetics to be notably different.
For a start, tabs for Home, Friends, Watch, Marketplace and Groups are now running across the toolbar at the top of the screen. There are more pronounced side panels, and any notifications beside your profile picture don’t jump out at you quite as much as they did before.
A ‘New Facebook.com’ was promised in a blog post from the social media giant back in May. As of this week, the updated look has been rolled out by default and, in Facebook’s usual chaotic and whimsical fashion, account holders are suddenly being told that the old platform will be discontinued next month. That means the Facebook set-up we knew could be gone by this time next week.
The May blog post cites benefits like faster navigation thanks to the new tabs, the introduction of a dark mode option and easier management of Facebook Groups and Events – but, as is always the case on the internet, large numbers of users appear resistant to change. Traditional and conservative as ever, The Express has run an article about how to revert to ‘Classic Facebook’ (to save you clicking the link, you can only do this for the brief period of time before the old layout disappears, so it hardly seems worth the bother).
Personally, my immediate reaction is that Facebook now looks a lot like Twitter, to the extent where I almost posted something on Facebook that I meant to tweet yesterday. No doubt we will become used to Facebook’s new appearance as time goes on, although an AdWeek article makes some criticisms of the overhaul from a marketing perspective. As well as arguing that navigation is now more difficult when using tools like Creator Studio, the article notes that Facebook has failed to iron out many of the issues marketers faced previously, including intrusive and unnecessary notifications.
Whatever Facebook looks like, its potential for marketing cannot be overlooked. For advice on how to tie in your website with social media and maximise your reach, why not get in touch with our team at Engage Web?